Credit/Debit Card Skimming at Gas Pumps

Please be alert when paying at the gas pump for Credit Card Skimming Devices.

These devices are being found at gas stations throughout New York City and surrounding counties.

In January 2014 thirteen defendants were charged with using card skimmers installed at gas stations too steal more than $2 million from customers throughout the southern US.
In July Detective Jeffrey Marshall of Nassau County PD stated that three different businesses within a two minute drive from the stations had cases of employees skimming cards.

Skimming devices are being found at gas pumps throughout the U.S and in one recent check-up, 180 pumps had been hijacked.

A former Credit Card hacker, claiming to have made thousands of dollars a day in cash, who trained US Secrete Service instead of going to prison, stated that he preferred targeting gas stations over ATM machines.

The following NYC gas stations had skimming devices:
February 2014: one incident Hess station in Queens – 134-15 Cross Bay Blvd.
April 2014: two incidents Sunoco stations Queens – 1248 Coney Island Ave and 1907 Cropsey Ave.
August 2014: one incident Mobil Queens – 43-07 Astoria Blvd.

WHAT YOU CAN DO?
Choose a pump near the cashier. Experts say skimmers prefer to target pumps in the shadows.
Inspect the gas pump reader before using it.
If you do suspect a skimming device, call 911.
If a device is discovered refrain from touching, CALL 911.
When possible utilize cash, instead of your credit/debit card.

Treyger Calls on HHC to Prioritize FEMA Disaster Relief for City Facilities Including Coney Island Hospital

Council Member Mark Treyger, Chairman of the Committee on Recovery and Resiliency, has expressed his concern over the disparity in FEMA disaster assistance received so far by city hospitals compared with the amount secured by private institutions. In a letter to Health and Hospitals Corporation President and CEO Dr. Ramanathan Raju last week, Council Member Treyger noted that NYU Langone, a private facility, has requested and been approved for over one billion dollars in FEMA assistance, while public Health and Hospitals Corporation facilities have been awarded only a fraction of that amount.

For example, Bellevue Hospital Center has only received from FEMA about one-tenth of the $1.13 billion that has been awarded to NYU Langone. Coney Island Hospital, which sustained approximately $700 million in damages, has only been approved for $22.1 million in FEMA-funded capital repairs and just $22.9 million for emergency preparedness and response expenses.

“These numbers [show] that the money received so far is miniscule compared to what is needed and compared to what at least one other institution has received,” wrote Council Member Treyger. “While some delays may be related to HHC working to get the highest possible commitment of funding from FEMA, our public health institutions must not be short changed or left behind in the recovery process.”

In his letter, Council Member Treyger asks CEO Raja for his assistance in explaining this apparent disparity and how HHC is working to resolve the gap in reimbursements between public and private facilities. Specifically, the letter asks how HHC estimates the need for each facility and how much has been requested so far; whether consultants have been used in this process; what factors are contributing to the longer timeline for HHC facilities compared with private institutions; and when a decision is expected from FEMA on the amount of aid that HHC facilities will receive. “I understand that the federal disaster assistance process is complicated and time consuming, but without the reassurances of future information on the steps you have taken, or plan to take, such apparent disparities in disaster aid are deeply troubling,” added Council Member Treyger in the October 30 letter.

“Our city’s public hospitals play a critical role in serving residents in all areas of the city, especially places like southern Brooklyn that have limited options when it comes to health care. We have spoken often about a tale of two cities, and I am concerned that the disparities in access to health care that already exist in neighborhoods around the city will only be exacerbated as a result of Superstorm Sandy. To prevent that from happening, it is imperative that the Health and Hospitals Corporation makes the securing of the necessary FEMA funding for its public facilities a top priority. This will ensure that a solid plan is in place to get these applications moving forward and begin securing the funding commitments needed to recover from Superstorm Sandy and prepare our critical facilities for future emergencies,” said Council Member Treyger.

Two NYPD Officers Facing Brutality Charges

Two New York City police officers are facing criminal charges in the videotaped beating of a teenage marijuana suspect.

David Afanador and Tyraine Isaac were expected to surrender and be arraigned on Wednesday.

Security video from Aug. 29 captured the 16-year-old slowing down on a Brooklyn sidewalk as the officers caught up to him.

It shows an NYPD officer identified as Isaac hitting the teen with a roundhouse punch. Seconds later, as the teen tries to surrender, Afanador appears to hit him with his pistol. The beating continues until the teen drops to the ground and is handcuffed.

The case comes after the July death of an unarmed man, Eric Garner, during a videotaped arrest on Staten Island.
There was no immediate comment from a law firm representing the officers.
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27 Year Old Killed in Belt Parkway Crash

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The NYPD says a 27-year-old man traveling at high speed was killed after losing control of his vehicle in Brooklyn.

Police say it happened at 2 a.m. on the Belt Parkway, west of exit 13.

They say the driver wound up on the shoulder of the roadway after being ejected from his Infinity M-35X.

Police say he was driving eastbound when he slammed into a guardrail and then crossed three lanes of traffic before hitting another guardrail and light pole.

They say the driver was ejected while his vehicle went over the guardrail, landing on the ground below the elevated parkway.
The accident caused extensive delays in the area.

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Ice Skating in Prospect Park

The Samuel J. and Ethel LeFrak Center at Lakeside is now open for its first full season of ice skating. In addition to public ice skating, the LeFrak Center features figure skating, ice hockey, and curling, indoor/outdoor dining at Bluestone Café, and an array of special events and public recreational programming.

“In just a few months last year, the LeFrak Center brought ice skating to thousands of people, and we are excited to see how much Brooklyn enjoys our first full season,” said Sue Donoghue, President of the Prospect Park Alliance. “In less than a year, Lakeside has become one of the Park’s most beloved destinations, and we look forward to welcoming the entire community for free and affordable activities all ages can enjoy.”

The LeFrak Center will offer public skating hours Tuesdays through Sundays. For those new to ice skating, ice hockey, curling or figure skating or for guests wanting to take their skills to the next level, The LeFrak Center offers weekday and weekend toddler, youth, and adult programs as well as a fundamentals of curling clinic for adults aged 21+.

“Alongside NYC Parks Department and the Prospect Park Alliance, we look forward to our first full ice skating season. Since the December 2013 opening the LeFrak Center at Lakeside has transformed into a vibrant year-round and multi-faceted community destination, bringing together recreational activities, events, and locally sources culinary options for children, families along with all visitors of Prospect Park,” said Itai Shoffman Principal and Executive Director of Upsilon Ventures.

Entry to the LeFrak Center property is free and open to the public. Admission to the skating rink, participating in skating-related programs such as lessons, or taking advantage of the LeFrak Center’s services including ice skate sharpening or equipment rentals requires a fee. For guests enjoying Prospect Park, Bluestone Café’s distinctive menu delivers a premier dining experience with delicious light bites, signature salads, traditional and vegetarian sandwiches, sweets, varietal wines and Brooklyn Brewery’s finest beer selections.

TOMORROW: Councilman to Host Free Legal Advice With NYLAG

Councilman David G. Greenfield is partnering with New York Legal Assistance Group (NYLAG) to provide local residents access to free legal help at his district office this Wednesday October 29th. From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. the NYLAG’s mobile van will be parked outside the Councilman’s office to offer legal assistance to residents who need help but cannot afford an attorney. Anyone interested in taking advantage of these free services is encouraged to call Councilman Greenfield’s office to schedule a 45 minute legal assistance appointment. Attorneys will be on hand to provide free confidential legal advice pertaining to issues residents have with government programs such as Medicaid, Medicare, food stamps, housing and other public assistance programs.

“Everyday my office receives calls from neighbors seeking legal help. The New York Legal Assistance Group has been an invaluable partner in helping assist these people in need with free legal assistance,” said Councilman David Greenfield. “I am proud to team up with NYLAG this Wednesday to bring their excellent attorneys right to Boro Park to help people one-on-one.”

Councilman Greenfield is committed to expanding legal assistance in his district. He hosted the community’s first ever NYLAG mobile legal assistance day with great success in the spring of 2013. Additionally, the Councilman has sponsored free immigration-related legal services in his district office twice a month in partnership with the City University of New York Citizenship Now project. Any resident interested in accessing immigration services is encouraged to call the Councilman’s district office to schedule an appointment.

The NYLAG mobile van will be parked outside Councilman Greenfield’s office at 4424 16th Avenue from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. this Tuesday. Interested residents should immediately contact his office at (718) 853-2704 for more information about the types of services that will be provided or to schedule a timeslot for Tuesday. Residents should bring identification and any relevant paperwork or documents to their appointment.

Woman In Police Custody On Drug Arrest Dies

The New York Police Department says a woman who was in custody on a drug-related arrest died after suffering an apparent seizure while she was being processed.

Authorities say 22-year-old Jasmine Lawrence of the Bronx had been arrested around 8 p.m. Saturday on Bedford Avenue in Brooklyn on charges of criminal sale of marijuana and unlawful possession of marijuana.

She was put into a holding cell at the 79th precinct around 10 p.m. as her arrest was processed. Police said shortly before midnight she had an apparent seizure in the cell area. Emergency medical personnel arrived minutes later. She was taken to the hospital at 12:44 a.m. Sunday, and pronounced dead a short time later.

The medical examiner will determine cause of death.
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Ebola Virus Disease Safety Information

Key Points:
Ebola is a severe, often fatal disease caused by a virus in humans and non-humans.
A large outbreak is now occurring in West African countries: Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone. 8,033 total cases resulting in 3,865 (48% case fatality rate) as of October 8, 2014.
The Health Department has developed guidance for people who recently traveled to one of the three Ebola-affected countries.
If you have not traveled recently to these areas understand that the risk of exposure is minimal.

The risk and likelihood of contracting Ebola is very low unless a person has direct unprotected contact with:
Blood or other body fluids (stool, urine, saliva, vomit, semen) of an infected person.
Infected human and/or non-human remains.
Items contaminated with an Ebola patient’s infectious fluids such as soiled clothing or bed linens.
You CANNOT contract Ebola through the air or just by being near someone who has been infected.

If you visited countries affected by the outbreak, and develop a FEVER within 21 days, seek medical care immediately.
Alert the doctor’s office or emergency room about your symptoms BEFORE going.
Tell your doctor if you had DIRECT CONTACT with a person who might have had Ebola.

Symptoms: Fever, headache, muscle pain, body aches, vomiting, diarrhea, fatigue, stomach pain, unexpected bleeding. Hospital staff will not ask you about your immigration status. You will be seen regardless of ability to pay.

Councilman Treyger Partners with Coney Island Hospital for FREE Flu Shots

Council Member Mark Treyger has partnered with Coney Island Hospital to hold a free flu shot clinic next Thursday (October 30th) at Warbasse Houses (2770 West 5th Street, Community Room 4C). Residents must register in advance by contacting Council Member Treyger’s district office at (718) 373-9673. Appointments are available between 11:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m., and residents are asked to reserve their time as soon as possible.

“This is a chance for residents to receive a free flu shot right in our community in order to protect against the flu this winter. My thanks to Coney Island Hospital for partnering with me to offer this service to the public in a convenient location and for their efforts all year to keep our community healthy. I urge all residents, especially those at risk for health complications, to take this precaution against the flu,” said Council Member Treyger.

The New York State Department of Health recommends flu shots for individuals at high risk of serious complications from seasonal influenza, including people 65 and older and people with certain chronic medical conditions. Since the flu virus can spread through coughing and sneezing, it is also recommended that people who regularly come into contact with young children get a flu shot. Influenza season generally starts in the winter months and peaks in January through March, so it is important to receive a flu shot as early as possible.

For more information or to make an appointment, please contact Inna Lukyanenko at Council Member Treyger’s district office at (718) 373-9673.

New Initiative to Supply Every NYPD Officer and Patrol Car with Tablet and Smart Phone

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Mayor Bill de Blasio, Police Commissioner William J. Bratton, and Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced a major initiative that will in many ways transform the way NYPD officers perform their duties. Using criminal asset forfeiture funds secured by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office through recent sanctions cases, the $160 million NYPD Mobility Initiative will provide NYPD officers with up to 41,000 mobile devices, including tablet computers and handheld devices that will streamline law enforcement efforts, increase the safety of New Yorkers as well as police officers, and ensure fairness within the City’s criminal justice system.

“We must have 21st Century tools to deal with 21st Century threats, and this infusion of new resources will arm our officers with the technology and information they need to fight crime and protect the City against terrorism more efficiently and more effectively,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “In an emergency, every minute counts, and this initiative will allow our officers in the field to get up-to-date, accurate information and process critical information anywhere in the city. I am thankful for the Manhattan District Attorney for being such a great partner to the City, and for his efforts to secure this much-needed investment that will benefit all New Yorkers for years to come.”

“This technology funding will significantly help to advance the NYPD’s move into 21st Century policing. The timely access to critical information is key to effective policing and enhanced public safety. This initiative will clearly result in more efficient crime-fighting, counter-terrorism measures, and service to the people of New York City. I want to thank New York District Attorney Cyrus Vance for his invaluable support in furthering this important technological advancement,” said Police Commissioner William J. Bratton.

This $160 million initiative will upgrade the NYPD’s mobile technology platform and fund it over the next three years, allowing the Department to outfit up to 6,000 police cars with ruggedized tablet computers, as well as provide 35,000 handheld devices to every police officer. These modern, handheld devices will provide police officers with a variety of tools, including state-of-the-art terror and crime-fighting technologies that have been developed in the last decade. For example, the NYPD has developed a mobile version of the Domain Awareness System (DAS) that the Department pioneered in the past five years to detect and prevent terrorist acts. Like the DAS itself, the mobility platform—including the hardware that supports it and the applications that run on it—was built separate from the rest of the NYPD’s technology systems, which are somewhat dated. With the funding that is being provided by the City and the District Attorney for this technology, the NYPD will now be in a position to expand its functionality to help in other crime-fighting and public service efforts.

The new NYPD Mobility technology will also include:

Enhanced Patrol Efficiencies – Patrol officers will have expanded search capabilities, including access to the majority of NYPD databases, and will be able to conduct various record checks from the field in a timelier manner. The tablets and handheld devices will also have the capability of directly receiving information pertaining to 911 emergency calls, often prior to radio dispatch, enabling swifter response to crimes in progress and requests for service. Programs are being developed through which officers will have the capability to enter reports in the field and to process other data without returning to the precinct.

Officer Safety Features ­– Real-time 911 data, including call-taker notes, the past history of 911 calls, and complaints and police actions at dispatched locations will be available to responding officers. These features will help to provide potentially relevant and critical information about the location to which they are responding. Additional features, including GPS applications, are being explored. This technology will assist officers through mapping features and help to identify other police resources for back-up and response coordination purposes. GPS will also assist in more efficient management of patrol resources.

Detective Support – Detectives working active cases in the field will have access to the full range of investigative databases, creating a virtual portable Real Time Crime Center. The detectives will be tied into the Department’s Enterprise Case Management System, allowing them to review and update case information from the field.

Direct and Decentralized Communications – Wanted posters, Amber Alerts and missing persons photos can be sent to field officers immediately, thus enhancing the potential for a more timely arrest, victim recovery or rescue.

Enhanced Communication – Email addresses will be established for all officers to improve Department communications across the board.

Counterterrorism Force Multiplier – The ability to promptly alert field officers will have particular benefits for possible counterterrorism issues. Alerts will be transmitted directly to officers in the field through their electronic devices, thus providing critical information and updates in a timely and coordinated manner.

It is expected that further functionality will be added to the mobile platform next year, including the integration of fingerprint scanning to support in-field identity checks.

The initiative also includes the funding of data plans, additional infrastructure (such as servers and storage to support the delivery of the application to mobile devices), security (including hardware and software to protect the NYPD network), network enhancement (capacity, resiliency, and redundancy of the interface between the telecommunications network and the NYPD network), application development (data collection and retrieval, and seamless integration with the NYPD’s case management system), and tech support.

In addition to the critical upgrades to the NYPD’s in-field law enforcement capabilities, the platform will have a major impact on New York City’s criminal justice system by providing real-time data and increasing the accuracy and efficiency of information sharing between the police department, local prosecutors, and other law enforcement agencies. This new technology will not only strengthen public safety, it will also further establish fairness within the justice system by ensuring that the right individuals are being arrested and charged with crimes. By giving police officers in the field tools generally only available at the precinct, they will have as much information as possible to make the most informed decisions.

The $90 million in funding being allocated by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office is the result of sanction cases, including its share of approximately $440 million of the $8.83 billion settlement reached in June 2014 with BNP Paribas S.A. (BNPP)—the largest bank in France—for violating U.S. sanctions. The City is committing $70 million in asset forfeiture funds from the settlement. In the guilty plea, BNPP admitted to moving hundreds of millions of dollars through Manhattan-based financial institutions on behalf of primarily Sudanese, Iranian and Cuban clients. Today’s announcement is the first major allocation of these funds, and the District Attorney’s Office intends to make additional funding announcements in the near future focusing on transformative projects in sex crimes, cybercrime, mental health, public housing, and domestic violence.

Police Looking Into Arrest of Brooklyn Subway Performer

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Musicians rallied around a fellow subway performer whose arrest in a busy station came after a confrontation over whether he needed a permit and was captured on video as straphangers jeered police.

The New York Police Department said it’s looking into the arrest of Andrew Kalleen.
Kalleen was performing Friday at the G train stop in Brooklyn’s hipster Williamsburg neighborhood, home to trendy boutiques and cafes patronized by ultrahip residents and tourists who flock there to experience Brooklyn life. A police officer told Kalleen he had to leave the station because he needed a permit to play there.

“I’m not going to argue with you,” the officer says calmly in the video.

Kalleen, also speaking evenly, refuses to leave and tells the officer he has a right to be there performing, then directs him to the section in the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s rules of conduct that says artistic performances and solicitations of donations are allowed.

The flustered officer reads the section aloud, as the watching straphangers clap, but then decides to eject Kalleen from the station.
The MTA does not issue permits, and the rules the officer read aloud are accurate. But the MTA rules differ from state law, which says an entertainer can be arrested for loitering in a transportation facility unless he was authorized to be there.
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Council Members Meet with Commissioner Bratton to Combat Rise in Anti-Semitic Crimes

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Wednesday, just hours before Shemini Atzeres, Councilman David G. Greenfield met with New York Police Department Commissioner William Bratton and his top staff to discuss the recent rise in anti-Semitic crimes around New York City. Council Members Mark Treyger and Stephen Levin joined the meeting to review recent hate crimes and strategize on ways to put an end to the rise in violent anti-Semitic attacks and vandalism. Also in attendance was the Deputy Chief of the NYPD James W. Murtagh, members of the Hate Crimes Task Force, Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce, Captain Mark Magrone, and Director of Legislative Affairs from the Mayor’s Office Jon Paul Lupo.

“We must have zero tolerance for anti-Semitic crimes anywhere but especially not in New York City,” said Councilman David G. Greenfield. “It’s shocking that we have not only seen an increase in anti-Semitism but that anti-Semitic crimes make up the largest portion of hate crimes in New York City.”

During the meeting Councilman Greenfield emphasized the fear that is fueled by the rise in anti-Semitic crimes in New York City. Last year, there were 192 recorded hate crimes, 64 of them were anti-Semitic hate crimes. The NYPD confirmed that this year there has been a 50% rise of anti-Semitic crimes between the months of July and September. The NYPD has recognized the importance of addressing this issue and has brought in the former Senior Advisor to the United States Secretary of Homeland Security to research this area and come up with a plan on fighting hate crimes more aggressively. To date, only 108 arrests have been made out of 313 hate crimes so far this year.

Councilman Greenfield hosted a rally at City Hall right before Rosh Hashanah with twenty-five other elected officials to make it clear that these hateful crimes are not welcome in the City of New York and demanded that the city do more to reduce anti-Semitic crimes. Following that September rally Commissioner Bratton agreed to sit down with the Council Members to discuss ways to reduce hate crimes across the city and ensure all precincts are accurately reporting hate crimes. During the meeting, Greenfield urged Commissioner Bratton to work on strengthening communication between precincts and the local community, especially in an instance of a hate crime, and for the NYPD to be more aggressive in denouncing such crimes. Councilman Mark Tregyer addressed the need for more officers on patrol in neighborhoods with high amounts of hate crimes and Councilman Stephen Levin discussed focusing on hate groups such as a recent gathering of white supremacists in Brooklyn. Councilman Mark Levine sent questions regarding accurate statistics of hate crimes and increasing transparency on hate crime reporting.

“It’s very clear that Commissioner Bratton takes our concerns very seriously,” said Councilman Greenfield. “I am grateful to Police Commissioner Bratton or meeting with us on this issue and acting quickly to put an end to this pattern of heinous crime.”

“Hate crimes have no place in New York City and we must all work together to stamp them out. I want to thank Commissioner Bratton and the NYPD for a productive meeting and for their comprehensive strategy to fight against hate crimes,” said Councilman Stephen Levin.

“I have been concerned with the rise in bias crimes and other incidents in recent months impacting the safety of neighborhoods across southern Brooklyn. I appreciate Commissioner Bratton’s response to these concerns and willingness to work with us in light of issues like the gun violence that continues to plague some residential areas and the hate crimes we have seen across New York City,” said Councilman Mark Treyger.

Council Member Mark Levine, Chair of the Jewish Caucus said: “In order to tackle this crisis, the public needs a full understanding of the scale and scope of anti-Semitic crimes in New York City. We should not have to wait for the state-mandated annual report to be able to access this information. Details on hate crimes should be available on a weekly basis so that everyone can track the progress in combatting this scourge.”

Man & Woman Found Dead in Sheepshead Bay Apartment

Police are investigating the deaths two people found unconscious and unresponsive inside an apartment in Sheepshead Bay.

Police say 43-year-old Michael Huhem was found on a sofa and 44-year-old Kimberly Owens, of Crosby, Texas, was found on the floor nearby. Both were pronounced dead at the scene.

It happened in the man’s home on 3030 Emmons Avenue.

Police did not give a cause of death. The medical examiner’s office is investigating.
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Senator Golden Awards $200K to Local Schools

State Senator Martin J. Golden today is
announcing that he has awarded $200,000 in educational funding, through the New York State Senate, to support and assist the teachers and students of more than fifteen schools in his district.

The funding has been awarded in response to requests from individual schools as to the need for financial assistance to develop and improve instructional programming. Many of the schools included smart boards and laptop carts a top their wish lists recently addressed to Senator Golden.

State Senator Marty Golden stated, “It always gives me great pride to secure funding for our schools which I know is an investment in our future. Our schools must continue to advance with the times, so that our children can learn in a state of the art classroom. Our students deserve the best opportunity, and anything less than that would be a failure.”

“On a regular basis, I speak with the leadership of our schools to better understand the needs of each school I represent. I stand ready to assist each of the schools I represent throughout school districts 20, 21 and 22, and I look forward to building on the progress we have made,”
concluded Senator Marty Golden.

This allocation includes funding for the following schools:

P.S 97, P.S. 102, P.S./I.S. 104, P.S. 127. P.S. 176, P.S. 185, P.S. 195, I.S. 201, P.S. 204, P.S. 207, P.S. 222, I.S. 228, P.S. 238, P.S. 264,
and P.S. 277.

Brooklyn Man Beats 3 Year Old To Death

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Police say a 3-year-old girl has been beaten to death and her 5-year-old brother assaulted at an apartment in Bushwick.

They say Jeida Torres was discovered unconscious and unresponsive Saturday afternoon.

A Fire Department of New York spokesman says Jeida was rushed to a hospital in cardiac arrest and was pronounced dead there.

Her brother is in stable condition at Wyckoff Heights Medical Center.

Neighbor Keith Best tells the New York Daily News and New York Post that the boy had big bruises on his face and arms. He says the children’s mother and grandfather sobbed when they arrived home and found out what had happened.

Police say they have made an arrest, but no charges have yet been filed.
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